NaNoWriMo 2013: Day 23

I know, I know. I missed yet another day of writing yesterday. But we had plans, we got home late, and we had to get up early this morning, so why would I stay up past midnight to write more words on my novel when I was still ahead?

Yeah, so that’s why I didn’t write yesterday. Funny, though, because I have to get up even earlier tomorrow, and look what I’m doing right now: writing a blog entry about my day of writing.

9:50 PM-11:00 PM: This is really funny. I mean, I talked in my last entry about not knowing what in the world I’ve gotten myself into. Whenever I don’t know what to expect next in my story, whenever there is a change of plans and my outline doesn’t work, I slow down. I can’t write as fast. I mean, how can I, when I don’t even know what’s supposed to happen in the next scene?

Then, I did five 10 minute word wars, four of which had word counts greater than (or equal to) 520 words! 0.0

I have never written so fast in my life. I still didn’t beat the all time record of 566 words in a ten minute span, though, but I mean, getting 500 words or above on 80% of the wars is really an impressive feat.

I’ve come to the conclusion about two things: one, it really helps to listen to music between word wars, preferably the same song over and over so that, whenever you hear it, it reminds you of the novel you’re currently writing (I’ve listened to my novel’s theme song 93 times now, this November only. That’s like, almost nine hours worth! 0.0); and two, to type as fast as you can regardless of typos and force yourself to fix them later (which is extremely hard for me to do, but I didn’t do it tonight).

Kinda weird to think that those two things combined made me more productive, but they’re the only things I can attribute to the awesome word counts today. Unless…unless the fact that I didn’t know what I was doing made me productive? Could it be that I have a bit of pantser blood in me and have never known it? 0.0

Anyway, there has been another interesting twist in this thing called my novel. You could say I was being generous to my characters by giving them a special ability (now that they’re sort of dating…), but, for the strangest reason, they didn’t want it!

I mean, yes, they most certainly wanted it, and they tried using it, but now it doesn’t work, which is not what I had planned in the outline. It was like I was giving them a brand new car to drive around, and it broke before they could get anywhere. I’m not doing this on purpose to them, honest! Either they are trying to help me create more conflict (and thus make the story more interesting and fun for me to write, which is really sweet of them), or they just like torturing themselves.

Either way, I’m happy with the direction the story has taken, thanks to them. 😀

Words written today: 2,612

Total words written: 57,990

Scenes edited today: 0

Total scenes edited: 15

NaNoWriMo 2013: Day 21

Wow, what an exciting day in the world of my story!

No editing got done, sadly, but that’s okay. I realize that I won’t make my editing goal of a scene a day, but 15 scenes edited is better than none. 🙂 I’ll still probably edit a few more scenes before the month is over, but right now I want to focus on my NaNo novel!

10:30 PM-11:55 PM: Notice that I started in such a way that I would definitely make it to 2.5k, unlike my near disaster last night (which all turned out well in the end). I wanted to be sure to make my goal, so I wasn’t going to take any more chances!

Anyway, I had an absolute blast with the story today. I realize that for the amount of words I wrote, I didn’t move the story very far, but my characters helped by adding some pretty cool things into the mix. What was supposed to be a straight forward getting-information-out-of-locked-room scenario turned into a wild treasure hunt. My characters got into the room, only to find it empty (it wasn’t supposed to be empty, darn it!), then they found a note, which told them to go into another room, which told them to find something else in another room, which led them back into the original, empty room…long story short, the “empty” room was actually covered in a map written in invisible ink! 0.0

The things that pop up unplanned in story still amaze me.

On a totally unrelated note, I learned that the old language of my creatures is not spoken, but hummed, like a song. Not exactly sure what this means yet…

Anyway, six 10 minute word wars brought me to 2830 words. Since the scene wasn’t finished, I wrote another 15 words to bring it to an abrupt close.

And now that the scene is finished, the most exciting (and least outlined!) part of the story will commence. I’m just as excited as I am scared to dive into the next scene, for I have no idea what I’m doing (then again, I never do). What I have written in the outline seems kinda bland now, and I’m considering ditching it. Maybe I’ll let my characters take over and see what they can do. 🙂

Words written today: 2,845

Total words written: 55,378

Scenes edited today: 0

Total scenes edited: 15

NaNoWriMo 2013: Day 20

I can’t believe NaNoWriMo is already two-thirds over. 😦 Why do I do this? When Week 3 rolls around, I feel like I’m still trying to remind myself that Week 1 was two weeks ago. I just started my novel! The fun can’t end in 10 days (or 9, since it’s technically after midnight). Someone needs to come up with a 3 Month National Novel Writing Event or something. One month just goes by too fast. (I’m probably the only human on the planet insane enough to think such a thing.)

Anyway, as you can see from my lack of posting yesterday, I didn’t do any writing or editing. I also didn’t do any editing today, despite going outside to do just that. I did get stuff done, mind you! It just wasn’t editing. (And, yes, maybe it wasn’t all that productive…)

10:45 PM-11:55 PM: I went into tonight with the goal of writing 2.5k, but then it hit me: I only had time for five 10 minute word wars. Which meant I would have to write at least 500 words for each word war to make 2.5k before midnight.

Oh, well, I thought, trying to make myself feel better, you can’t achieve every goal you set for yourself. You’ll just have to come to terms with the fact that you’ll be a bit shy of 2.5k, but that’s okay, because you’re still so far ahead.

I then told that little voice to shut up.

In my most recent post (down in the last paragraph there, after all that rambling), I talked a little about the fact that you can still make your goals, even when the math says otherwise.

Fate must love me, because I had another one of those days today! 🙂

So, after doing four 10 minute word wars, I had 1,939 words. Well, by this point, that stupid little voice was trying to console me, and I actually listened to it and told myself that I could write extra tomorrow if it made myself feel better. I mean, there was no way I could write 561 words in a 10 minute span. Not when my highest record ever was, like, 548 words.

And I swear I was not trying to type extra fast during that last 10 minute war. I mean, the story was just getting so exciting! This weird, almost evil presence (which was not supposed to be evil) is taking over my main character through a special weapon, making her do weird things, and she’s actually enjoying it.

Heh, I just now realized that what’s going on in my story sounds a lot like the One Ring…oops.

Anyway, with all that…*drum roll*…I wrote 566 words!

I checked the math twice to be sure, because I couldn’t believe it. But I did it, according to my computer’s calculator. 🙂

And now for the stats:

Words written today: 2,505

Total words written: 52,533

Scenes edited today: 0

Total scenes edited: 15

NaNoWriMo 2013: Day 18

This has probably been the craziest noveling day in the history of NaNoWriMo.

2:50 PM-3:40 PM: Before I go jumping into the craziness, I first must say that I edited 2 scenes today. While still behind on this goal, I’m happy with the way Secrets is coming along, and I’d rather go slowly and do a better job than rush through it and make more of a mess.

8:46 PM-11:59 PM: Okay, now for the craziness. So, if you remember last year, I broke 50k on Day 19. Now, knowing me, I always like to beat records, right? The last thing I wanted to do was get to 50k again on Day 19 this year. It just seemed too repetitive, like I wasn’t trying hard enough to do something awesome. Besides, it just so happens that my biology class falls on the 19th, which means that probably no writing will get done. That would have meant I would have reached 50k on Day 20.

I was not going to let that happen.

However, I procrastinated with writing, like I always do. But unlike the usual writing days, instead of needing 2.5k, I needed 5,460 words to make 50k before midnight. When I did the math, that equated to about twelve 10 minute word wars. I do four of them in an hour, so I needed three hours.

If I started at 9:00 PM, I would make it. Just to be safe, though, I planned on starting at about 8:45 PM to get an extra word war in.

As you can see by the time indicated above, I started one minute late. Not too bad, except that I had a little problem.

I totally forgot that I needed Dad to help me with something when he got home. Something that was most likely going to eat about a half hour or more out of my writing schedule. And suddenly, just like that, I wasn’t going to have enough time to get to 50k before midnight.

For once in my life, word wars were actually going to slow me down. I didn’t have the time for the five minute breaks in between wars.

I wrote for 20 minutes, then 6, and then 11. I couldn’t keep going at a steady pace. The TV was on, I was waiting for Dad to get home, and I was just too worried about not making the goal. I had written 1,139 words at this point, with two and a half hours to go.

The pressure was on.

I got a 10 minute war in and then wrote for 2 more minutes before Dad got home. Word count: 1,684. Words to go: 3,776.

He helped me for about an hour, and the clock was ticking. I got in bed a bit after 10:30 and jumped in late on a word war at 10:35. Then, I wrote for 4 minutes during the break, did another 10 minute word war, then wrote for another 2 minutes during the break.

But this wasn’t working. It was 11:05, my word count was at 2,870, and I still needed to write 2,590 more words in under an hour.

Boy, you have no idea how much I was panicking.

I did one more 10 minute word war, and I beat my all time record with 552 words! I only paused to post it on the forums and compulsively update my word count before I completely ditched the wars. This was my night. I was not going to stop writing until midnight, whether I had 50k or not. Even the small breaks I allowed myself for brief posting and compulsive updating had been slowing me down. I needed to keep my face in the story and not look away.

So, from 11:06 to 11:59, I kept my face in the story. I even stopped myself from correcting typos, or trying to spell bigger words that kept tripping up my fingers. There just wasn’t time.

When I paused to glance down at my session count, I wrote 2,066 words! In just 53 minutes, I wrote over 2k! That has to be some kind of record for me.

And when you do the math, here is what it all comes to: 5,488 words for the day. Meaning I got to 50,028 words one minute before midnight! 😀 I did it, despite the fact that I thought it was going to be impossible.

This just goes to show that even when you think you can’t make your word count (and you even have the math to prove you won’t make it), you can still prove yourself wrong. Never ever give up, because if you work hard enough to reach your goal, you will make it. 🙂

Words written today: 5,488

Total words written: 50,028

Scenes edited today: 2

Total scenes edited: 15

NaNoWriMo 2013: Day 17

Yes, I missed yet another day of writing this November. But I had a really fun time yesterday with my dad and a bunch of good friends, and I think it was great to have a bit of a break from writing so late at night.

No editing got done because the weather was bad today. (I really can only edit outside because I need to get away from the house so I can focus. That’s why I write my novel so late at night. It’s because everyone is in bed, and I can focus. And since the night is taken up by writing, that leaves the outdoors for editing.)

10:25 PM-11:55 PM: I got a little off with the word wars because I came onto the forums at the wrong time. I mean, I wanted to get started as soon as I got online, but everyone was in the middle of a war, and I didn’t want to wait. So, I did a 10 minute word war (by myself), then a little 3 minute session to get me in sync with everyone else, and then did five more 10 minute word wars. My goal was just to get above 2.5k, but I made it above 3k!

As for the story: I’m amazed that I wrote over 3k on this one scene. I mean, I was over halfway done with it before I got started tonight, and yet I somehow managed to add over 3,000 more words! It’s been a really fun scene to write, as it involved a police chase! Although, I may edit that out in subsequent drafts. But that’s what I love about NaNoWriMo and first drafts; you have the freedom to test ideas out.

Back when I used to edit articles on Wikipedia, there was this thing called a sandbox. You could create your own sandbox or use the main one. Users could write drafts of articles in the sandbox, test formatting, or use it as a place to rewrite an existing article without changing the real one. That’s what I feel NaNoWriMo is like; it’s a sandbox, a place where you can play and test ideas out, a place where ideas are not set in stone, a place where you can write freely.

Though, it also gives your characters the freedom to screw up your plot.

Words written today: 3,085

Total words written: 44,540

Scenes edited today: 0

Total scenes edited: 13